Packing for Romance

When I travel, there is so much to get ready. I have to plan care for my kids and answer about the ever important “what am I going to wear?” question. Enter my Trunk Club stylist. She makes it easy for me to get new pieces for my travels and takes that planning off my plate. Plus, more often than not, the pieces she chooses for me work well for life after my vacation, too! Bonus!

Before we left to go to Italy, I was emailing with my Trunk Club stylist, and she said she had found the cutest shoes that I would love (more on these later) and a couple romantic holiday dresses that would be perfect for my trip. Anyway, romance was on the cards – Matt was taking me to Il Pellicano Hotel in Italy to celebrate our anniversary – and there is that zing that you get when you are wearing a new dress… *SO* how could I resist?

I popped into Trunk Club’s LA Clubhouse a few days before we took off (CLICK HERE for my behind-the-scenes video of my visit). *Clearly with getting ready to go, I couldn’t find time to blowdry my hair!

As always, when I visit the Clubhouse, I’m greeted with a free drink (that day I needed the extra caffeine of a cold brew) and my stylist pulls clothes for me, while I kick back in their gorgeous fitting rooms. Each time I visit, I feel like I learn a new brand or a new little styling tip! I’m going to share some of the outfits and pieces I LOVE below.

This summer yellow dress IS irresistible (and also good for a boomerang!) I’m loving yellow right now, and this Joie dress will not only take me to Italy but also back to LA for the summer months.

I’m loving this cotton dress – the tie on the top is uber-flattering (HELLO GIRLS!) and the side cutouts show just a bit of skin for a little romantic wink… (I wore this dress in our last night in Italy – Matt and I drank Camparis and listened to the piano man at the Il Pellicano hotel and it did the trick!

My Trunk Club stylist pulled this ATM dress (knowing I’m a huge fan of their tanks, super soft cotton!) and then, which I would never have done on my own, paired it with these Stuart Weitzman over-the-knee boots which I have to say I love the look of. The dress by itself is great for summer, and though it is probably too early to think about fall, when adding the boots, it will take this dress to London with me!

 ATM dress, with Veronica Beard jacket and Stuart Weitzman over-the-knee boots[/caption]

Now that Memorial Day has passed, white pants are my daily uniform, I’m LOVING this pair from James Perse. Super flattering and casual, and so so soft. (But I just have to make sure Rocket doesn’t jump up on them after he runs around in the garden…) And if white pants aren’t on the menu for the day, then it is white shorts. My Trunk Club stylist turned me onto these longer shorts a few visits back, and now that it is summer, I’m crazy over the white length as well.

These James Perse pants are my new summer uniform (along with my ZCD Montreal shoes which are my year-round uniform!)

And finally for the winner – *THESE* Loeffler Randall shoes. It makes me want to sing Happy Birthday to my feet. They are SUPER comfortable (I don’t know what happened but lately I’m SO over a stiletto…) and they add pizazz to any outfit. My stylist made me try them on with these simple jeans and this James Perse sweater and it just looks so chic…She knows just how to push me outside of my comfort zone (and more often than not, she’s right!).

We are now back in LA for the summer, working on the opening of our new restaurant The Draycott, but I will be wearing my ‘holiday’ Trunk Club treasures in LA (dreaming of Campari cocktails in Italy).  Might even try to click my gold heels to see if they take me back!

Because Trunk Club is a Nordstrom company, they even participate in Nordstrom’s annual Anniversary Sale at their six Clubhouse locations! If you’re a Nordstrom cardmember, you receive early access to the sale beginning July 12 before it opens to the public on July 20.

Have a summer trip planned and want (NEED) something new to wear? Sign up for Trunk Club HERE to have a personal shopping experience with a stylist – and find that thing that you never knew you needed but can’t live without.

Happy Shopping xx

 

 

Empowering Women through Exotic Scents

My London girlfriend has made the move to Los Angeles, which is SO nice to have an old friend in town, but also she is pretty incredible… Amy, besides being an amazing mother to two gorgeous boys, is the creator of Sana Jardin, the first socially conscious luxury fragrance house. Through her fragrances, she is supporting the women of Morocco – and so through this blog post, telling you all about Sana Jardin, the circle continues.

Sana Jardin was created with the belief that a bottle of perfume can transform lives and change the way business is done, empowering the workers at the source of the luxury fragrance industry. Through Amy’s luxury fragrance, she teachers social enterprise skills and enables female harvesters in Morocco to epicycle floral waste from perfume production into a line of candles and orange blossom water, for sale through their own cooperative which retains 100% of the sales.

I love rituals, so in reading about Sana Jardin, I love learning that high priestesses used fragrance and essential oils to heal and elevate themselves to higher realms and that female orange blossom harvesters were called upon for their delicate touch and calm demeanor.

Equally as important as the social justice, Sana Jardin smells gorgeous – the seductive jasmin, heady amber, and warm sandalwood bottles the secret garden of social justice.

Check Sana Jardin out here – you will love the gorgeous scents (and along the way, will be helping other women)

Love x

“I REALLY NEED NEW CLOTHES” – Me, Every Morning

 

This time of year I get in a spring cleaning mode – I want to declutter and get-rid-of… As I write this, I’m staring at a couple enormous trash bags of clothing that are going to charity, and several more bags of our children’s clothes that they’ve sprouted out of.

BUT as I now have some extra hanger space (and I’m now officially sick of ALL OF MY CLOTHES and NEVER HAVE ANYTHING TO WEAR – see blog title…), I thought a morning visit to my Trunk Club was in order. (Plus, they have the best kombucha ON TAP there which is another very good reason to visit). As I’ve used Trunk Club before, I just emailed my stylist and scheduled an appointment. She asked me for some direction on what to pull – so… as spring is here, I want some fun prints that I can mix and match, and also (always) stripes. I’m a bit stripes crazy – when I was packing for our Southeast Asia travels, the only print I brought on the trip were stripes, as I knew I would never get sick of them. Cute and chic and so versatile, stripes make anything feel like a classic.

When I arrived at Trunk Club, my stylist had two rails pulled for me – one of all stripes, and one of prints – with a few shoes and accessories (I’m IN LOVE with these Golden Goose sneakers, which I wasn’t planning on buying as I have a few pairs already, but I didn’t even know this color combination existed and I actually don’t know how I lived without them).

PRINTS CHARMING (mixing prints)

STRIPES FOREVER

I HAVE TO HAVE THESE (honestly, they are different than the 4 other Golden Goose shoes I have!? Right?!)

Please excuse my hair in these next pics as I wasn’t planning on taking all these photos – but I just have to show you all how amazing the pieces are – and how fun this is. The truth is, is that I never actually go shopping. Gone are the days that I wander through shops, browsing amongst rails. I either see something on instagram that I like and then somehow hunt it down, or just wear the same uniform of jeans and a t-shirt or Stella McCartney trousers and tops… One of the reasons that I love Trunk Club is that their stylists pick out new pieces to jazz up my wardrobe – and I learn about new designers that I never heard of.

For example, when I wanted prints, I just wanted a bit of fun, and WOW did the stylist deliver – I love the combination of this Diane Von Furstenburg skirt with this Frame top – and if I really want to go wild, add this DVF jacket with it for some POWer. I love the stripes on this Rag&Bone top and the little hint of magenta that ties in with the DVF trousers. Mixing prints takes skill, but when it works, it WORKS so well – thankfully I can leave the skill to my stylist and then just have fun and feel fabulous.

Frame Striped Top, DVF skirt, DVF jacket – VOILA!

Rag & Bone Top, DVF trousers – this is such a FUN look!

I love this Saloni dress – which makes me just want to count down the days until we are back in London for a summer garden party, and the combination of this Frame striped top and this Vanessa Beard camp jacket ticks both boxes of my stripes-obsession and my charming prints (or Prince Charming?)

Loving this flowery Saloni dress for spring and summer parties (and my bag is Chloe that I picked up on another visit to Trunk Club in December)

I’ve always wanted a camo jacket but felt they are a little heavy – this Vanessa Beard jacket is perfect! And I didn’t even know I needed these jeans but now I LIVE in them and haven’t taken them off since this picture was taken.

My stylist also added in some pieces for me to try on that weren’t on my list – the new trouser-shape jean – which, just like the Golden Goose sneakers – I actually don’t know how I’ve gotten dressed without them in my closet. I’ll be wearing my trouser jeans ALL.THE.TIME (keep an eye out of them in my instagrams – I grabbed a white pair and a light blue pair from Frame…

I LOVE Stripes (I think I said that before?) AND I love FRAME (which I told my stylist – and HELLO! A Striped Frame shirt magically appeared on my rack of treasure at Trunk Club…

Anyway, if you’ve done your spring cleaning (clever you!) and you ALSO have some extra closet space, then you can sign up HERE to work with a Trunk Club stylist to add a spring into your wardrobe. Just try it – I promise I won’t steer you wrong! Happy Shopping (and I promise next time I take pictures of myself I will get my hair blown out)

XX Marissa

I’m loving this look – it is ALL DVF and I would never have put it together myself but it is sort of fabulous… (and this is why stylists exist!) x

 

Capsule Travel Wardrobe c/o Trunk Club

I love packing for a trip like this – it requires careful planning, decisive editing, and obsessive organization, which satisfies all of my OCD tendencies perfectly. This three month trip is all about adventure – and packing for a family of five as we travel across 5 countries and 3 continents is nothing if it isn’t an adventure. Of course I had to think about packing clothing for the kids, HOW I was going to pack for hotel living, as well as snacks and activities for our journey, but more on that later… for now, how was I going to pack for myself – for a visit to London to see friends and family, with outings to Frieze, the theatre, and cocktail parties  – as well as pub afternoons, walks in Hyde park and weekends in the countryside? That in and of itself is enough – then add on 2 months in Southeast Asia, to Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam – where though we weren’t backpacking around like I did post-college, I didn’t want to be carting around piles of luggage with us (we were going to have enough as it was!)

For London, I needed some key pieces that could take me for a week in October (our short layover en route to Asia) and then for a few weeks end of November – for all the activities that city life has to offer. And then, I needed a capsule of a capsule collection to take to Southeast Asia. I didn’t want our Southeast Asia trip to be a fashion show for me – quite the opposite, when traveling to foreign places, I actually want to blend in as much as possible rather than stand out. I want pieces that I can wear again and again and I don’t get tired of them – more of a traveling uniform rather than ‘look at me’ pieces. AND because we were traveling for 2 months and we planned to do laundry once a week, I also wanted pieces that I could toss in the sink for a quick rinse and hang outside our villas – so cotton is essential. The pieces needed to work for a morning walk on the beach, a cover up by the pool and a walk in the Bangkok night market.

Trunk Club to the rescue! Again, I called upon my stylist to help me figure it all out.  She did a great job building me an LA wardrobe so I thought, why not – her styling services are free after all and I only had to pay for what I kept. I explained the adventures ahead to my Trunk Club stylist – and here is what she sent me in a box – to try on at home (and I kept it all!) which you will see in all my instagram posts!

+ James Perse V-Neck Cotton Dresses – I bought these in black AND white and am wearing them ALL. THE. TIME. I wore the black one the other night to dinner and Matt said, ‘see boys? when you grow up, find a woman who puts on a simple black dress and ties her hair up and looks as beautiful as your mummy, and you will be the happiest men in the world…’ MISSION ACCOMPLISHED! I wanted a dress that I could wear in the morning to breakfast, by the pool as a cover up,  and also could dress up (hair up? bit of my tinted lipgloss? and voila!) for dinner.

+ Current Elliot White Dress – I never would have thought to buy this dress had someone not suggested it to me – or rather put it in a box and sent it to me to open up and try on at home. It is the perfect cover up (but again, I also wore it to an afternoon walk in Phuket town and it looked like I had dressed for town – not just a lazy beach coverup). AND I can throw it in the sink for a quick wash and hang to dry (which is essential as throughout the course of a meal, I have at least one of the kids climbing in my lap and inevitably sticky curry hands are covering my front). (This is the dress I’m wearing below – I LOVE LOVE LOVE it – and even though I’m wearing it all the time here in Thailand, it will be great on the beach in LA too)


+ Current Elliot Grey VNeck Dress – Soft – basic – comfortable WITH POCKETS! A mothers dream come true! I wish this dress came in other colors but so far,

+ Alexander Wang Striped Shirts – I can’t get enough stripes ever – and while traveling it is really the only ‘pattern’ that I don’t get sick of if I’m wearing the same clothes for weeks on end. AND these shirts are brilliant as I’m also pairing them with my new Mom Jeans that Julianne picked out for me – for airplane rides and even my new Rag & Bone leather trousers for London pub afternoons.

+ Caslon Tshirts – I needed a few shirts just to have when I didn’t want to wear a dress – to throw with my favorite new long shorts by McGuire (see pictures below) or for traveling or around the hotel room. The most basic of the basic t-shirt in a few colors that I also wouldn’t panic if they got covered with prawn sauce or tuk tuk dirt. And voila! Julianne wrapped up a few Caslon (I ordered them in black, white, blush, navy and grey after I tried the first one) and now I’m totally addicted. They are SO soft – and unlike some of my other favorite white t-shirts that I have to remortage our house for – they are SO inexpensive! I’m wearing the black one in this picture below:

+ A striped Current/Elliot Muscle Tank (picture at the bottom) – again, this is something that I would never think of trying on – and yet it is a staple for me here – as clever Julianne tucked it inside my trunk to try on. (That is the beauty of this service, you discover things you never knew you would like, and they are all packaged up for you – for FREE!)

+ My new MOM jeans (how appropriate for the trip as these little munchkins are ALWAYS with us – and I’m a mom 24/7) and my new Equipment turtle neck sweater which again, I never would have chosen for myself but it is a staple on all our plane rides as the neck keeps me warm on flights but when we land in 90 degree Cambodia, I’m not sweating(not sure what it is made of but it is genius, as my stylist knew) for traveling.

SO, try it – click here (trust me on this one!) and try TrunkClub out for free! Happy shopping – and hey, even if you aren’t about to take an adventure around the world, try it for your next wedding or weekend trip away – or if you just need to update your closet – you can still have an adventure trying on some new clothes.

x

California-ing my Closet with Trunk Club

So yes, Los Angeles living is very different than London life – in about a thousand different ways. We were expecting a change in weather (whoop whoop – sunshine!), food (avocados everyday all day), and lifestyle (is #HikingHermers a hashtag yet?). What I didn’t even think about was the change in wardrobe. That is where I turned to Trunk Club for their expertise in making the transition.

On one of our first days in Los Angeles in January, I took the children on an evening outing to the Santa Monica Pier (ps. this is NOT on my recommended LA list after our experience, it is seriously gritty … better to view the lights from afar than get up close). I dressed them in their London clothes – trousers, lace-up boots, button-down shirts and jumpers, and Sadie in her tights and a dress, and I dressed as I would for an outing in London – boots, tailored trousers, and a leather with fur accented ‘look at me’ jacket. We walked up to the pier and well, everyone did look at me – and us. We CLEARLY were not from around these parts. Our children looked WAY to posh and polished to be clambering around on the pier – and I just looked ridiculous – like I was ready for a stroll down Sloane Street rather than a few rounds of ski ball with the munchkins. I immediately ordered cotton t-shirts and fleece jackets for the kids – but I needed more help.

A week later, I had a photoshoot at the house and one of the magazine’s stylists was going through my closet and she asked me ‘Where are your CLOTHES!?’ I have rows and rows of cocktail dresses, polo dresses and tea dresses – and other rows of matching jumpsuits and tons of formal fabulous long jackets. ‘These are EVENT clothes, but where are your LIFE clothes!?’ She was right. I had outfits, but not go-about-my-day clothes. I’m not actually sure what I wore to go about my normal day in London, but clearly nothing was working here on the westside.

A couple weeks later Matt and I met some old friends for dinner at Jon & Vinny’s (now this IS on my recommended LA list) and after the dinner, my girlfriend looked at my Stella McCartney jumpsuit and said ‘oh how cute, you still get dressed up for dinner.’ OH GOODNESS. Here I was, back to driving on the right-hand side of the road, back to enormous pantrys and driveways and cars that can fit all of our children, and yet, I was still stuck in my London wardrobe.

*SOS*

Thank goodness – Trunk Club came to the rescue. As a born-and-bred Californian, I’m a forever fan of Nordstrom. I had heard about Trunk Club, Nordstrom’s personal styling and trunk service through my visits over the years to Nordstrom but now I actually needed some real help. And sure, I can dress myself and have my own personal style – but what I don’t have is time. I’m just not the type to spend a couple hours wandering through a department store or even scrolling through vogue.com’s pictures of fashion week – and if I’m on any designer’s mailing list and get sent an email with their next collection, I usually unsubscribe. So TAH-DAH! Trunk Club (aka. my Fashion Fairy-Godmother) showed up and offered to California-ize my closet.

This is me having fun trying on clothes that were picked out JUST. FOR. ME! (WHEEE!)

This is me having fun trying on clothes that were picked out JUST. FOR. ME! (WHEEE!)

Here’s how it all went down:

Julianne, a Trunk Club stylist called me and we chatted through my style, what I’m looking for and what I was missing from my wardrobe (everything).

I headed to their Culver City location and walked into the Most. Amazing. Enormous. Styling Studio of Clothes and Accessories! The Trunk Club stylist greeted me with an entire rack of dresses, jackets, tops, jeans, pants, shoes and bags that she had chosen for me based on our chat – designers I had actually knew and loved and some new ones too.

Let the games begin! I worked my way through the rack and liked everything.

I've always been a 'pocket' girl - this APC dress is my new fav

I’ve always been a ‘pocket’ girl – this APC dress is my new fav

Julianne nailed it. I picked up a couple great day dresses (APC is my new favorite brand for easy casual dresses), I had NO idea that Steve Madden made the shoes I’m been pining after (they were so cheap I bought them in every color), Julianne convinced me that I can pull off denim shorts (I guess I am a born-and-bred California girl right?), and tank tops and shirts that I need and that are LIFE clothes.  And I fell in love with the perfect leather jacket (of course it is Balenciaga) and the perfect little leather pants (Rag & Bone) – BUT the pants weren’t in my size and SO she is sending them to me, free of charge, in another trunk – along with a few more beach dresses that she thinks will work for my days at the Beach Club with the kids. Of course I have ‘resort’ wear for being on holiday in Europe but afternoons at the beach require something different. Anyway, that is coming in a few days and I’m hooked, all without a fee! FREE STYLING! (get it? see what I did there? FREE STYLING?) Oh dear, it is late and its been a long day so I’ll just jump to the punchline before I tell any more bad jokes:

The moral of the story, check out Trunk Club – just click here  and happy shopping. You will discover some pieces that are so YOU but you never knew it! And everything that you’ve been missing in your life. Never again will I show up to the Santa Monica Pier in fur. (Actually, I’m never going there again anyway…)

Some of my denim picks below…

hello CALIFORNIA GIRRRRRL (I bought them in 2 colors)

hello CALIFORNIA GIRRRRRL (I bought them in 2 colors)

 

I would NEVER have chosen this length short for me but I actually haven't taken them off since I bought them - LOVE.

I would NEVER have chosen this length short for me but I actually haven’t taken them off since I bought them – LOVE.

 

These are the perfect MOM jeans with a Current Elliot muscle t. Basically my new California uniform. (check!) Thank you Trunk Club!

These are the perfect MOM jeans with a Current Elliot muscle t. Basically my new California uniform. (check!)

SO what is your favorite outfit that my trunk stylist chose for me – AND what are you going to choose when you sign up here? Let me know! I love hearing from you guys!

Summer Lovin’ These Dresses

The truth is that it has taken me awhile to get with the fashion program here in Los Angeles. Immigrating with three young children is much more of an adventure than we ever imagined – and updating my wardrobe to be more LA-friendly has taken a backseat to settling the children into school, nesting in our house, and rebuilding our life on the west coast. It also means that I’m mostly wearing a mix of leggings and tank tops (in the hopes that I will actually get some cardio in – even if that means the school run is my exercise – which sometimes it seems to be totally exhausting… if i’m sweating it is exercise right?) or jeans and t-shirt (again, LA is casual… right?)

That said, I always felt much more ‘put together’ when we lived in London. London life was just more fashionable or rather, there were so many more ‘events’ to dress for. Here in Los Angeles, it is a beach day or BBQ day or something in between. Gone are my event clothes but I still yearn to dress up a bit. Enter SUMMER DRESSES!  Where as in London I had certain dresses for a day at polo or Henley or a summer garden party, in LA I’m wearing these dresses ALL. THE. TIME. It is more of lifestyle dressing over here on the West Coast but I’m learning that I can wear these dresses anytime to a ladies lunch or cocktails in Beverly Hills or around the house… and I feel right at home (wherever home is!)

Veronica Beard is my new favourite recent discovery, I love her cold-shoulder looks (my mom-tum still haunts me so I try to show a lot of shoulder which is the only part of my body that hasn’t changed shape over the last few babies!) I love the entire Zimmermann collection all the time for everything always, HVN is great for daytime dresses, and I love this yellow Kooples dress to stand out in the crowd.

Some favourites below – happy shopping!
Veronica Beard
Kooples
Zimmermann
HVN

My Jewellry Jam with Van Peterson

Once upon a time there was a girl who spent a lot of time in her husband’s Eclipse bar on Walton Street, and after a few too many Watermelon Martinis, she would wander across the street where Eric Van Peterson had a shop and the girl would browse around and discovered these Hammered Rose Gold Earrings and she had to have them because she knew she would wear them every single day.  And she did.  And she wore them in photoshoots and people would see the pictures and ask her where she got them, so she sent them to Van Peterson. And she wore them to show promotional events and to red carpet events and while filming Ladies of London and fans would tweet her where she got them – and so she sent them to Van Peterson. Eric then asked the girl if he could name the earrings after her – as he was getting so many inquiries about them.  Sure she said, and so he named them the Marissa Earring. This isn’t the end of the fairytale though…

I got to know Eric and after a few more watermelon martinis, I asked him to design some other jewellery for me – other pieces that I would wear every day, like the Marissa Earring. I was looking for the perfect bohemian summer earring that I would want to wear with summer dresses – and ta-dah – the Endless Summer Earring is either dangling in my ears or on my bedside table until the next evening.  I was also looking for a diamond hoop – everyday diamonds that were chic and subtle but also with a little bit of bling – and after some creative meetings, we designed the Perfect Diamond Hoop which really is perfect. I’ve also loved a pearl earring but wanted something a bit more imperfect than the perfect pearl – the Freshwater Pearls are perfectly imperfect and just beautiful.

Check out my entire Marissa Hermer x Van Peterson Collection and let me know what you think – I promise these pieces will be the ones in your dish by the sink or your bedside table – the pieces you always wear and you will live Happily Ever After.

PAJAMA PARTY ESSENTIALS

Confession: I’m a pajama expert.

When I was on bedrest with Sadie, I spent a LOT of time in pajama. When my doctor first told me I was going to be on limited activity for the foreseeable future months, in order to lift my spirits, I forced myself to get excited about luxurious stylish sleepwear. *PSA, if you are reading this and on bedrest with a tricky pregnancy, the BEST thing you can do for yourself is buy yourself some nice new box fresh pjs* Hey, if I wasn’t going to be shopping for stilettos, I might as well invest in something I was actually going to be wearing – a LOT!  I love Olivia Von Halle for a bit of luxury (when I’m wearing my Olivia Von Halle pjs, PLEASE come surprise me at my house in the morning so I can show them off). Eberjey is super duper soft, Desmond & Dempsey has great fun prints and Yolke is my new discovery and I’m buying this pair of stripey fun sassy green ones (below) as soon as I post this.

Fast forward to our life now in Los Angeles – we spend lazy Saturday mornings around the house and we have a family rule that we don’t get out of pajamas until lunchtime – so equally the children love their soft snuggly pjs as much as I like lazing around in my sleepwear.  The kids love their super soft Hatley pajamas (here, here, and here) and Skylar Luna has the sweetest prints.

Recently, someone asked me what was on my “Where Do You See Yourself in 5 Years’ list – I have absolutely no idea is the truth nor is it something I think about. What I DO think about is ‘Where I Want to be at 7PM’ and the answer is in my cosiest softest pajamas with the munchkins snuggled around me – here are a few of my favourites for the entire family.

Happy Shopping (and snuggling!) xx